|Blue Gourami, photo from Flickr Creative Commons, user Brian.Gratwicke|
Scientific Name: Trichogaster trichopterus
Origin: Malaysia, Thailand, Burma, Vietnam
Life-span: 4 years
Size: 4 inches
Temperature: 72° to 82°F (22 to 28°C)
Food: varied diet of flake food, bloodworms, tubifex, brine shrimp, frozen foods, guppy fry
Care: The blue gourami is a peaceful community fish, although it will eat very small fish like guppy fry. Generally, if a fish is too big to be swallowed whole by the gourami, it is safe to keep it in the same tank. Blue gouramis enjoy a planted aquarium. They also need plenty of room to swim.
Sexing: Male blue gouramis have longer dorsal fins that come to a point. Females have a rounder, plumper belly.
Breeding: The blue gourami is an egg laying fish that uses bubble nests. To condition the fish for breeding, separate them. Feed them a varied diet and I've had success feeding them betta pellets and frozen food. After a week of conditioning, put them in the same tank. The male will build a bubble nest. The female will lay up to 1000 eggs and they will pick them up in their mouth and spit them into the bubble nest on the surface.
The female should now be separated. The male guards the eggs until they are hatched. Sometimes the male will spit spouts of water into the bubble nest to keep water circulating around the eggs and prevent them from molding or growing fungus. The eggs will hatch within 2 days and you can remove the male from the tank. The fry love newly hatched brine shrimp.